Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Hubert Minnis Remarks: FNM Mega Rally, RM Bailey Park, April 20, 2017


Honorable Dr. Hubert A. Minnis

Leader of the Free National Movement

Mass Rally, R.M. Bailey Park

Thursday, April 20, 2017


F-N-Ms, F-N-Ms, F-N-Ms:

My Fellow-Bahamians.

Oh, what a feeling.

My heart is overwhelmed.

My spirit is full.


The long national nightmare of the PLP is soon to be over.  The message of the thousands upon thousands here tonight is clear:  IT’S THEPEOPLE’S TIME.

You can feel the wave of change rippling across this massive crowd and across our Bahamaland. Change is on the way!!!


Before I came here tonight I got a formal report on the state of the general election. The report is based on information from every constituency and includes specific numbers. I formally report to you that the Free National Movement will form the next government of The Bahamas. 


I want to invite the Bahamian people to Perry Christie’s retirement party. The Price of Admission is your Vote.   Cotton Candy Christie’s theme song should be The Great Pretender.  Let me remind you of some of the words from the song:

Oh-oh, yes I'm the great pretender
Pretending that I'm doing well…
Adrift in a world of my own…
Too real is this feeling of make-believe”

Oh-oh, yes I'm the great pretender

Fellow Bahamians:

         Let me read from a story in one of today’s papers:
         “EMAILS leaked from a data breach of China Construction America’s (CCA) servers show that from as early as 2013, Jerome Fitzgerald was seeking to secure millions of dollars in brokerage, trucking, and limousine contracts at Baha Mar while he sat in Cabinet as the Minister of Education, Science and Technology, The Tribune has learned.


“The emails contradict the Minister, who this week denied ever using his office to direct contracts to himself or his family from the multi-billion dollar resort.”

“Mr Fitzgerald - the Progressive Liberal Party MP for Marathon - appears also to be requesting $20,000 a month from Baha Mar’s original developer Sarkis Izmirlian …

“In an email dated May 18, 2013, sent to Mr Izmirlian by Mr Fitzgerald… Mr Fitzgerald indicates his readiness to start brokerage and trucking services for the Baha Mar project and remain the brokers of record for the property.”


My Fellow Bahamians:

If Fitzgerald had any shame he would have done the honourable thing and resign but he has no shame and so I call upon Prime Christie to fire him so that he will not continue to sully the good name of The Bahamas.  Additionally, in the absence of the Prime Minister not firing him I call upon all Bahamians to fire them all and vote them out.


My Fellow Bahamians:

Was this a shake down or shut down?   Enough is enough. We have to get rid of this corrupt and victimizing PLP.


I have a different vision for our country because of whence I came and because of the values I got from my mother.  I grew up a poor boy sewing pants, selling newspapers and shining shoes.  I thank God every day for giving me a mother who instilled in me and embraced the values of an abiding faith in God, hard work, respect and the importance of education at every step of the way.  An abiding faith in God, hard work, respect and education.  Those four things she reminded me about every day. And I live them to this day.


You see, if you don’t have an abiding faith in God, you can never believe that you can get from where you are to where you want to be. And if you don’t instil that in your children, they never believe that they can get from where they are to where they dream to be.


My mother taught me the value of hard work.  If you think sewing pants, selling newspapers and shining shoes is not hard work, go try to do it to earn some money.   Hard work teaches you about the dignity of hard work, and it teaches you the need to do whatever is proper and necessary to earn a living, knowing that it will only get better.


There are some things that you can only learn by doing. My mother also told me to respect my elders and to respect those who can teach me how to do better. Without respect, we believe that we know it all, and don’t need anyone to guide us.  This is the problem with the PLP. They don’t respect you.


My mother saw something in me that could take me beyond where I was, to become a doctor which was her lifelong dream for her son.  Although my mother said it many times, she didn’t have to.  We have been told by our parents that “actions speak louder than words”.  Some of us never quite learned that.  Apparently there are some people who believe that you can talk your way into making The Bahamas better.  Cotton Candy Christie has proven that sweet words only destroy the country.


Let me tell you how I climbed the rough side of the mountain.  My mother made sure that I had a love for learning at primary school and at secondary school.  By the time I got to university, a love for learning was deeply instilled in me.


Every child in The Bahamas deserves the same kind of foundation. By the time they get into the University of The Bahamas, they need to accelerate their learning.  They don’t need to be given remedial subjects to teach them what they should have been taught already.


Let’s stop playing.  Let’s stop playing politics with education.  It is disgraceful. The FNM will introduce in phases free education for qualifying young people at the University of The Bahamas.


Brothers and Sisters:

We have seen what five years of talking about unemployment has done about unemployment.  There are more households in The Bahamas with NO ONE working than ever before in the history of The Bahamas.  Nothing brings a sense of dignity and self-respect to people of working age like gainful employment either as an entrepreneur or as an employee.


This is why I will launch the most ambitious program in the history of The Bahamas to make thousands of young business people.

There are many politicians running around The Bahamas today parcelling out jobs, contracts, scholarships and bags of groceries to people who they believe are their supporters.  Stop insulting our people.  Bahamians want opportunities not handouts.  The only way to build employment in The Bahamas is to build the economy of The Bahamas.


As far as our economy goes, this is the worst administration in the history, and the worst PLP administration in the history of The Bahamas.


I don’t have to tell you that, you can feel it, and see it for yourselves. International rating agencies did not have to embarrass us by telling us for the first time in our history that our economy is junk.  We can feel it and see it.


Our own department of statistics did not have to tell us that under this administration we have experienced the highest level of unemployment in our modern Bahamas.  We can feel it and see it.  And on top of that this administration took even more money out of our hard earning with VAT and wasted it! 


Tell us Mr. Prime Minister, where the VAT money gone. 

 My Fellow Bahamians:

You have a solemn decision to make.  You are the ultimate judge and jury who will decide the fate of Christie and the PLP on May 10.  Let me read the charges against the PLP.  Tell me if they are innocent or guilty.

·      Wasting the VAT money.  Guilty or not guilty?

·      Failure to control the dump fire. Guilty or not guilty?

·      The disaster at Baha Mar.  Guilty or not guilty?

·      Bringing Grand Bahama to its knees.  Guilty or not guilty?

·      The BAMSI disaster.  Guilty or not guilty?

·      Perverting the course of justice in MICAL.  Guilty or not guilty?

·      Trying to sell our farm land in Andros. Guilty or not guilty?

·      Failure to provide mortgage relief for thousands. Guilty or not guilty?

·      Using the Bank of The Bahamas like a piggy bank for friends, family and lovers. Guilty or not guilty?

·      Turning the streets of Nassau into the wild, wild, west. Guilty or not guilty?

·      Losing millions at road traffic. Guilty or not guilty?

·      Failure to put checks and balances into the hospital authority. Guilty or not guilty?

·      Selling out to their friend Peter Nygard.  Guilty or not guilty?

·      Wasting money left right and center. Guilty or not guilty?

If they are guilty you must fire them.  Will you fire them?


Fellow Bahamians:

This election is a choice between the PLP and the FNM.  If you vote DNA the PLP might get back in.  I ask for your support.  I pledge to you to be a prime minister for all Bahamians.

God bless you all and God bless our Bahamaland.  Thank you and good night.

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